Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Zisk, Alyssa Hillary. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Old Hospital Story: No, I don't want painkillers.

Trigger Warning: Hospitals.

When I was at the Society for Disability Studies conference, I met people. Cool people. One of them was Corbett. And when I was talking to her, some stuff about hospital visits came up (I didn't wind up in the hospital much, but when I did, it tended to be for . . . interesting reasons, and I was just as odd inside as out.) Apparently some of the things I did in the hospital, even as young as eight, could be coded as acts of resistance or challenging paradigms. So I'm going to start talking about them. Well, the three that I actually remember, anyways. So the time when I was eight and two trips when I was sixteen, since I don't think I did anything particularly challenging when I was nineteen and at a hospital in China for a sprained ankle. I guess I did when I got a broken foot checked out a month after the fact, so I might talk about it too. We'll see.
I was eight. My belly hurt, a lot. Like, I had a high pain tolerance then, same as I do now, but it was so that I had trouble getting up. My mom brought me to the hospital, and they thought I might have appendicitis. They put in an IV. I spent a significant portion of the day telling them that I wanted food (which they wouldn't give me because they might need to take out my appendix,) being upset about the fact that they wouldn't give me food, being upset about the IV, and being bored. None of that is much of a much, resistance wise. (Remember: 8. Not doing anything really rebellious.) This one was mostly that they wanted to give me painkillers, and I didn't want them. I already didn't like them, and I didn't want them, and I said no. (I was eight. I didn't have the authority to enforce that no, especially in the level of pain I was in, but I did say it.) So they went to my mom, who I guess they expected to consent for me. She didn't, though. She went with what I had wanted.
Which is all kinds of resisting dominant stuff.
Patients: Not supposed to refuse things. Not supposed to have agency. Not supposed to make decide that what they want is different from what the doctor wants. Not supposed to challenge doctors, who are supposed to be all-knowing. (They're not, though. They're humans with extra education, which often assumes we have different goals than we do.)
Children: Not supposed to refuse things. Not supposed to have agency. Not supposed to decide things. Not supposed to have a different idea than the adults do on what the right thing is. Definitely not supposed to challenge the doctor, who is an adult and therefore supposed to know everything, and who is supposed to know everything again based on being the doctor.
Parents: Not supposed to back the kid up on the refusal of what the doctor wants.
But that's what happened.
And when I got out that evening? (It wasn't appendicitis.) The doctors wanted me on a liquid diet because eating solids would hurt. I wanted a sandwich. I got a sandwich. I couldn't eat much of it, but I got a sandwich.

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